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Gold prices rise following in-line U.S. retail sales data

Kitco News

(Kitco News) - Gold prices are seeing a modest boost following relatively in line retail sales data for January.

U.S. retail sales rose 0.3% in January following December’s downwardly revised rise of 0.2%, according to the latest data from the U.S. Commerce Department, released Friday; the data missed expectations as in line with expectations.

Meanwhile, core sales, which strips out vehicle sales rose 0.3% last month, following December’s rise of 0.7%.

However, the control group, which excludes autos, gas, building materials, and food services and directly feeds into gross domestic product calculations, was unchanged in January rose 0.1%. Economists were expecting to see a 0.3% increase.

The latest consumer data is having a small impact on gold prices. The yellow metal continues to hold on to modest gains; April gold futures last traded at $1,580.60 an ounce, up 0.12% on the day.

Not only did the control group significantly miss expectations, but Avery Shenfeld, senior economist at CIBC, noted that the three-month annualized pace of the component is negative 0.7%. However, he added that they are expecting consumption to pick up later in the year.

“We don't see a reason for consumption to remain weak given the strong growth we're still getting in labor incomes,” he said.

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